Washington is a Bass Fishing Hotspot

Photo credit Danny Garrett

Washington’s abundant collection of lakes, rivers and reservoirs are well-known for trout and salmon, but those aren’t the only fish species anglers are reeling in around the Evergreen State. In fact, Washington offers some of the best bass fishing opportunities in the country. 

With more than 1,000 lakes containing bass statewide and some outstanding river fishing opportunities, both smallmouth and largemouth bass are plentiful in Washington waters.  And, you don’t have to own a boat to catch bass – some of the state’s best fishing spots are from docks or along the shoreline. 

Photo credit Julie Jackson

Now that’s a BIG BASS!

In early August, an angler in western Washington caught a largemouth bass that shattered the 39 year-old state record. 

Bill Evans caught the huge fish in Lake Bosworth, a small lake about an hour northeast of Seattle. Weighing 12.53 pounds and measuring 23.0 inches long with a girth of 22.5 inches, the fish couldn’t even fit in Bill’s live well without its tail sticking out!  

Bill found the lake with the Washington Department of Fish and Wildlife’s (WDFW) online feature Fish Washington. The map-based webpage provides access to fishing advice and videos, as well as location information by county and fish species for lowland lakes, high lakes and marine areas. 

Fish for bass in Washington!

Grab a friend and check out one of these top bass fishing spots in Washington:

•    Moses Lake and Potholes Reservoir: Located side-by-side in central Washington, these two large reservoirs  are open year-round and are always near the top of the state’s list for providing excellent fishing for both largemouth and smallmouth bass. Largemouth bass are prevalent around the sand dunes in Potholes’ upper end, while smallmouth bass frequent rocky bottom areas and around docks. Moses Lake has more dock-oriented and shoreline structure.  

•    Lake Washington: Sandwiched between Seattle and the surrounding metro area, Lake Washington is one of the hottest smallmouth bass fisheries in the state. A variety of ramps and fishing piers makes this lake a perfect destination for families and beginner anglers.  

•    Banks Lake: Located in central Washington, Banks Lake is 27 miles long and offers over 90 miles of shoreline with abundant smallmouth bass opportunities. With a variety of camping facilities nearby and a popular state park, Banks Lake is a great spot for a family vacation or weekend getaway.  

•    Lake Whatcom: Located 30 miles south of the Canadian border, this 5,000-acre lake provides beautiful scenery, clear waters, and over 26 miles of rocky shoreline. Anglers can expect good results for both largemouth and smallmouth fishing. 

Contributed by: Washington Department of Fish and Wildlife | wdfw.wa.gov
Follow WDFW on Twitter at @WDFW and on Instagram at @thewdfw

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Rachel Blomker

Rachel Blomker

Rachel Blomker is a Community Relations Specialist for the Washington Department of Fish and Wildlife. She enjoys helping new anglers learn the basics of warmwater fishing in Washington through social media and outreach events. Follow WDFW on Twitter at @wdfw and on Instagram at @thewdfw.